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  1. #1
    Steve D (AL)
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    emiata window, adhesive advice? (long)

    A few days ago I installed a replacement rear window from emiata. It was quite a challenge. I got it installed the first time then realized (after I'd applied the adhesive) that the zipper teeth had not mated properly in several spots.

    So I removed the window, spent about an hour picking the contact cement adhesive off the window and top, then reinstalled it. It was very difficult to get the zipper teeth to mate properly all the way around. I found that if there was any tension on the zipper, the teeth would separate and I would have to back up and try again.

    I did not put the adhesive on yet (the second time) because I wanted to wait a few days and see if any problems became apparent. Although there is a little bit of a wrinkle in the window, I've resigned myself to live with it and now I'm ready to apply the remainder of the contact cement that was supplied with the window.

    The purpose of the contact cement is to hold the edge of the canvas top in place under the rubber trim around the edge of the window. I am concerned, however, that the contact cement may not hold the canvas flap in place as well as I'd like. I base this concern on the first time I glued it. The canvas doesn't tuck far enough under the rubber trim (especially at the 4 corners) that I have any confidence it will stay in place, especially with the top going up and down fairly frequently.

    Now, finally, here is my question. Has anyone had experience, good or bad, with using a different adhesive with the emiata window?


  2. #2
    cngizbleevng
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    I have the exact same problem with the emiata

    window in terms of the canvas not tucking in well. I used black silicone adhesive, although it wasn't completely successful. I too am living with a less than perfect installation because I DO NOT want to install the window again!

  3. #3
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    Re: I have the exact same problem with the emiata

    I have the same problem with mine. The glue that came with the emiata window was already mostly a rubber mess. I went to Menards and purchased some clear glue that is designed to hold canvas and rubber products. It works but on one corner the fabric is kind of short to go under the rubber surround. I am just going to leave the top down and next year I plan on getting a whole new top.99 2.8 Hellrot Red.

  4. #4
    Steve D (AL)
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    Should I pull it out and use the OEM window?

    After reading the responses and thinking about it some more, I am wondering if there is any adhesive that I could reasonably expect to result in a satisfactory install with the emiata window. It has to be flexible, strong enough to hold the canvas securely, yet removable so the window could be replaced again if necessary.

    The main problem seems to be that the rubber surround is just not wide enough and/or may not be shaped quite right in cross-section to cover and hold the canvas securely.

    I am wondering (and this is a painful thought) if I should consider removing the emiata window before I even try to glue it again, and send it back for a refund. Then get an OEM window and install that. The OEM window is not much more expensive so that is not a big concern; I bought the emiata because of the claim that the plastic was better (and it may very well be).

    Even if I manage to attain a good glue job, I will still be somewhat dissatisfied with the window because of the wrinkles at one end of the window. I don't think these wrinkles are caused by the alignment being off one or more teeth because the other end of the window looks fine. They don't fit the "diagonal wrinkles" description that seems to go along with the problem of the zipper tooth alignment being off. My assumption is that the emiata window may not be manufactured to the same tight tolerances as the OEM window and at the problem end of the window it is slightly misshapen.

    If I go to all the trouble of redoing it yet again with the OEM window, what are my chances of a better result? Does anyone know if the OEM replacement window uses glue to hold the canvas edge in place?

  5. #5
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    from the reports here..seems the emiata unit only

    ..lasts a year or so before it pulls out anyway...it may be cut smaller than Oem...if it doesn't look perfect to begin with, well, what's the point?..if you can get a refund, great!..regardless of that, your next purchase should be an oe replacement...i'm bettin' your next install will be a big improvement! Cheers! dk '97 2.8 bg R

  6. #6
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    FWIW...

    I installed the e-miata window and had the exact same problem. After trying to make it right I discovered that the window surround [black stuff that "clamps" the canvas is a different shape than the factory unit. The groove in the factory unit is a sideways U. The e-miata unit is a V. The problem is that the open end of the V does not contact the canvas, so it's basically useless. That's my experience anyway.. FWIW.

  7. #7
    Steve D (AL)
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    I'm on my way to the BMW parts counter

    Thanks for all the input, everyone. I'm stopping by the BMW dealer today to see if I can pick up a new genuine BMW window.

  8. #8
    Steve D (AL)
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    Successfully installed OEM window -- looks good

    I took out the emiata window and installed the genuine BMW version ($136 plus tax with my 15% BMW CCA discount; otherwise $160). The results were significantly better -- it looks just like it should now. The window is nice and taut and there are no problems thus far with the tucked canvas edge.

    I would have to say that the installation was really a nightmare, however. For about 3 hours I tried over and over to get the zipper started. No matter how much I sweated or how loudly I swore, it just would not catch. I could get the zipper pull onto the two halves of the zipper, but the teeth just would not mesh.

    I finally gave up and went back to searching the forum archives in hopes of a clue for what the problem was. The "eureka" moment was when I saw that someone else had the same problem and finally got it to work using a different zipper pull.

    I ended up using the emiata zipper pull to do the installation instead of the one that came with the BMW kit and that finally did it. By this point, the ends of the zipper had gotten rather ragged from my repeated fruitless attempts with the OEM kit zipper pull, so it was a challenge to get the emiata zipper pull started. But once I got it started, it meshed the zipper teeth properly all the way around.

    On close examination, I found that the zipper pull supplied with the emiata kit looks like it has been squeezed in a vise or pliers at the end where the zipper exits the pull. This apparently causes the zipper teeth to be forced together more tightly and is the "magic" that makes it work.

  9. #9
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    Very helpful input on zipper pull, will archive ..

    for future reference..Good job!.Cheers! dk '97 2.8 bg R

  10. #10
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    Yep, same here, that's why I sent it back for a

    refund. And after having it installed for a week, then removing it, I had to replace the top as no window would zip in. I can't sa it was the emiata window distorting the old top zipper half, but I wondered. I'm very pleased that I replaced the top tho, it is superior in every way to my old one.

    Perry Esposito- Virginia plate"99 E36 7"

    99 2.3, 5 sp, 57k miles, This stuff is listed to allow you to ask me questions about the effectiveness/cost/difficulty of the mods, not to be vain. Boston Green, self installed: new OEM Black top 5/5/06, M Coupe Dot leather Nappa seats and M steering wheel, Stewart High Performance Water pump, Whalen Shift Machine and seat bushings, clutch stop, Koni adjustable Sports all around, Ground Control rear shock mounts with Stygar reinforcement plates, magnetic oil drain plug, CL Strong Strut & CL Butt Strut, rear subframe bushing stuffers, Conforti CAI'ed and Sharked, Double Spoke 47 16" wheels w/ Goodyear Eagle F1 GSD3 tires, Porterfield R4S pads all around, Bosch +4 Plat plugs, Legend5 Silver painted calipers, front wheel BMW mudguards, Hella Projector Z headlights, Gary's Mirror adapter w/Gentex 115 electrochromatic mirror w/map lights, LeatherZ door armrest pads, Z3 Solutions air dam guard, OEM trunk buttonfinger lift, UUC clutch pedal bushings, Euro wiper relay w/ adjustable intermittent timing, Ungo MS8300 alarm w/keyless entry/SpaceshieldIII/extra one touch windows up & lock w/o alarm, seat tilt mod (removed), Drivers side cargo net, Blau Toronto w/ Thummer and PA2100 amp, Infinity 50.5cs 5.25" components & 452i 4" speakers, Kenwood wOOx sub, Xpel (3/01 - 6/06 front bumper, headlights, fogs, mirrors, rear fenders, replaced with Roadblock, prof installed, except fogs), Battery Mat, Roadster Accessories Polycarb windscreen

    http://www.ecarter.net/z3/toychest/tamiya/102.jpg


  11. #11
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    Cookie reported the exact same problem.


    Perry Esposito- Virginia plate"99 E36 7"

    99 2.3, 5 sp, 57k miles, This stuff is listed to allow you to ask me questions about the effectiveness/cost/difficulty of the mods, not to be vain. Boston Green, self installed: new OEM Black top 5/5/06, M Coupe Dot leather Nappa seats and M steering wheel, Stewart High Performance Water pump, Whalen Shift Machine and seat bushings, clutch stop, Koni adjustable Sports all around, Ground Control rear shock mounts with Stygar reinforcement plates, magnetic oil drain plug, CL Strong Strut & CL Butt Strut, rear subframe bushing stuffers, Conforti CAI'ed and Sharked, Double Spoke 47 16" wheels w/ Goodyear Eagle F1 GSD3 tires, Porterfield R4S pads all around, Bosch +4 Plat plugs, Legend5 Silver painted calipers, front wheel BMW mudguards, Hella Projector Z headlights, Gary's Mirror adapter w/Gentex 115 electrochromatic mirror w/map lights, LeatherZ door armrest pads, Z3 Solutions air dam guard, OEM trunk buttonfinger lift, UUC clutch pedal bushings, Euro wiper relay w/ adjustable intermittent timing, Ungo MS8300 alarm w/keyless entry/SpaceshieldIII/extra one touch windows up & lock w/o alarm, seat tilt mod (removed), Drivers side cargo net, Blau Toronto w/ Thummer and PA2100 amp, Infinity 50.5cs 5.25" components & 452i 4" speakers, Kenwood wOOx sub, Xpel (3/01 - 6/06 front bumper, headlights, fogs, mirrors, rear fenders, replaced with Roadblock, prof installed, except fogs), Battery Mat, Roadster Accessories Polycarb windscreen

    http://www.ecarter.net/z3/toychest/tamiya/102.jpg


  12. #12
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    Re: Successfully installed OEM window -- looks good

    You do not have to go out and find an emiata zipper just modify the OEM zipper yourself but be carefull, one cautionary note. It is very easy to split your zipper when attempting to squeeze the back ends together. It happens when you initially squeeze too hard and pry it apart to get the right clearance. Zippers are made of cheap pot metal and are delecate so go slow.

  13. #13
    Zach S
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    FINALLY got window zipper to mesh!!!!!!!

    Thanks for the info on clamping down end of the pull where the zipper leaves the pull. I had given up after 3 hours yesterday and another three today. I even called the dealership to set my appointment to have the window installed for $370. I decided to check the forum for a third time for advice and came across your post. Once I had the blue ends lined up and the zipper pull on I used a pair of needle nose plyers to clamp down the end before I pulled the zipper around. After that the teeth meshed no problem. If only I had come across your post 5 hours ago...

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    I used Permatex Silicone Adhesive

    My experience is mixed. I had lived with a leaking BMW seal for a number of years and finally decided to replace it. I decided on the Emiata window with the smoke tint as I thought it would look good on a black car.

    The install went very smoothly up until time to glue. The instructions were not clear on where to apply the glue, so I ran it all along the perimeter. It oozed out in a number of places and looked like crap. There also was a large gap at the corners.

    I pulled the top out of the seal separating it from the contact glue and spent the better part of a day removing all signed of the contact cement. I decided to use the same adhesive that is used in Shawn Foggs top fix ( see http://ackthud.com/shawnfogg/topfix.htm). Permatex Black Silicon Adhesive Sealant is really good stuff. I masked-off the top around the perimeter so if it oozed out, it wouldnt get all over the canvas, but some got under the tape in spots, but cleaned off ok. Before the adhesive set, I used duct tape and pulled the slack out in the corners where there was a little wrinkle and a larger gap between the seal and the top opening. That was about a year ago and no issues so far.

    Would I do it again? No. If the edges of your canvas are not shredded at this point, you should consider getting the OEM window.

    Poorsport
    '98 Z3 2.8

  15. #15
    Steve D (AL)
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    emiata vs. OEM window update

    I returned the emiata window and received the refund a few days ago (minus shipping, as I expected). I'm happy to report that he does stand behind his product.

    I need to clean/polish the OEM window as it is become rather foggy/dirty, but the mounting and rubber surround are holding up well so far.

  16. #16
    Paul Holm
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    Plastic replacement OEM site?

    After reading the posts about OEM versus Emiata, I think I'll try the OEM approach but haven't been able to find a online place to buy it less than $390. Could someone recommend an online URL to buy an OEM rear plactic window... I got an 1998 328i. Thanks, Paul

  17. #17
    Cookie
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    I have one of BMW's first pulls that actually fits

    I will cherish this with my life. I helped a neighbor kid install one the other day and it was about an hour with this pull. With Ernie's car and the new pull we got so frustrated he took it to a pro. Live and learn.

  18. #18
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    If you have a 1998 Z3 2.8, try here ($140.25)...

    Be sure to select "Z3 roadster" from the dropdown menu for "Model:" (do not select 328i).

    vc

  19. #19
    tfloyd
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    Re: If you have a 1998 Z3 2.8, try here ($140.25)...

    Thank you for the link. I ordered thr window from them. My question is does it come with everything needed for install? Is it as difficult as it sounds?

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    Yes, everything you need should be included ...

    However, I have heard of window kits that were missing the zipper pull (accidentally, perhaps). I have installed about six windows - about half the installations were easy (~1hr), the other half not so easy(~4 hrs). The key difference seems to be the zipper pull itself.

    If the zipper pull is too "tight", then it is almost impossible to start. If the pull is too "wide", then it will start easily but the zipper teeth won't mesh properly.

    I have used the trial and error method to adjust the pull - screw drivers to widen the gap - pliers to close it - until I got it just right.

    vc

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